By Dan Forbes
Dear Bishop Jackels, Roman Catholic Church, and to all whom it may concern,
My life as a Catholic has been a journey. I was baptized Catholic a few weeks after my birth. I have witnessed my devout parents denied communion during my entire childhood, like wearing a scarlet letter during Mass. One of them was divorced according to the church; though they were and remain devout to one another and the church, married over forty years. Once upon a time I enjoyed all things Catholic until about age seven or the “age of reason” or whenever I could start reading well… I had questions..and I still do.
I remember hateful Bishop Mahoney remarking that he would defy law in order TO discriminate against gays in Wichita 1977. I was confirmed a short time later in the church, with Bishop Mahoney and the faith of my family.
My family — my father still is working hard and he continues to adore my Mother. I decided when I was 12 that as long as I was living under his roof, he was driving me to church, and it was not costing me anything, I would continue to be a full member of his church. It seemed important to him and he asked for so little of me. He believed that there was only one way to do that: by believing in the “One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.” I tried, and have tried. Been untrue to myself.
I am but one of the millions of Catholics whom American bishops profess to lead and, when the church inserts itself into our political process, claim to speak for. No, not I. I do not agree with the church on most social issues. I think the church should lose tax-exempt status. Be investigated for the criminal enterprise.
Bishop Jackels, I am demanding that you excommunicate me. I cannot in good conscience belong to the church anymore; I do not want to be counted with the over 120,000 Catholics in your diocese or the millions of Catholics in the United States of America, or the 1.2 billion Catholics in the world.
I too witnessed the events of a pope during a Palm Sunday homily, including a local priest going on about what he called “petty gossip.” Unfair media, That “petty gossip” is a tsunami of reports of child rape perpetrated by Catholic priests across the globe and attempts by bishops, archbishops, cardinals, and the pope himself to cover up that child rape by moving ordained rapists to new parishes where they could, and did, rape again. That “petty gossip” includes one case in which the pope halted an internal investigation of a Catholic priest in Wisconsin who is alleged to have raped more than 200 deaf boys — and I have met and spoken with six of the survivors.
I demand to be excommunicated because after the study of the Church of Ireland, thousands and thousands of pages, I better understand the faith of my Irish-born Roman Catholic ancestors and my Catholic family, the faith passed down. I am breaking the chains.
I demand to be excommunicated because I do not believe women are second-class citizens.
I demand to be excommunicated because Catholic missionaries are informing impoverished citizens of third-world countries that birth control is a sin when it is in fact the single most important thing they could do to gain some small amount of control over their economic situation and health resulting in millions of dead babies this year!
I demand to be excommunicated because the church has become a hate group, one that is unnaturally obsessed with the sex lives of men and women across the planet. I demand to be excommunicated because I do not condone child rape or the concealment of child rape.
I look forward to new journeys without the weight of the church on my shoulders. I will find solace knowing no Catholic cemetery for me, no priest. Separation from the pope and the church will give me deep personal satisfaction because he continues to stand in the way of human progress; the Roman Catholic Church divides nations all over the planet. To hell with the church and to hell with this pope. I renounce the church, all teachings of the church,and all church traditions. I will not be a part of any organization that welcomes and comforts and gives refuge to hate mongers, child rapists.
I demand that you excommunicate me immediately and that you send me confirmation as soon as possible that you have expunged me from the roster of the Catholic Church.